John Waters was slated to give the New York's School of Visual Arts' commencement speech at Radio City Music Hall. Instead, he gave a different version of that keynote in front of a green screen, quarantined in his Baltimore home. Of course, it was still hilarious ("Tiger King" porno knockoff, anyone?) and still full of hard-earned wisdom.
"Artists are magicians: you can see what others can not, have a secret language, the power to make others follow... and you can change history with one ludicrous idea. While you’re still young, maybe it’s time to become a virus yourself—a good kind of virus, one fueled by the years of hard work you put in at the incubator known as the School of Visual Arts. Artists, you are the cure, too. The only people that can inspire the world to notice and then alter its destructive behavior.”
Congrats, "coronavirus class of 2020," all of you, everywhere!
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Last Monday, David Sedaris was granted an honorary doctorate in fine arts from Oberlin College in Ohio. Then, he gave the keynote address for the school's 2018 commencement ceremony. It was, of course, perfectly hilarious and full of spot-on, no-holds-barred advice for the new grads.
On May 24, just prior to giving the speech, the humorist and essayist appeared on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert (video above) and discussed how he picked the advice he was going to share, "Well, it kind of makes you wonder, 'What do I know? What wisdom do I have?' So I started keeping a list of my wisdom. Part of it is, you have to be really careful about scented candles. There's really only two kinds worth having... Diptyque or Trudon."
That was the first piece of advice he shared with Oberlin's graduating class. There are seven more, all gems, including "Be yourself. Unless 'yourself' is an asshole." Watch.
Also, Sedaris has a new book. It's called Calypso. Read the rest
Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School's class of 2018 got a surprise visit from late night talk show host Jimmy Fallon on Sunday. He took the stage at their graduation ceremony to deliver a humorous and heartfelt commencement speech.
When you think of commencement speakers, you think of people who are inspirational, people who are eloquent, people who've changed the world. When you think of high school students, you think of people who are immature, slightly awkward, still learning to be an adult.
Welcome to "Opposite Day."
The Parkland, Florida students were the survivors of the shooting that happened nearly four months ago on their campus. Seventeen of their classmates and school staff died in the tragedy on February 14, 2018.
Fallon said he and his wife and two young girls to the ceremony because "we wanted them to see what hope and light looks like."
Watch his full speech in the video above.
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Last Wednesday, soccer champion, equal pay/LGBTQ activist, and badass extraordinaire Abby Wambach delivered the keynote for Barnard College, an all-women's liberal arts college in Manhattan. She shared with the graduating class, who she deemed the "Wolf Pack," the four rules she used to unite her own soccer team "pack," the team which went on to win Olympic gold.
Here's the first rule, "MAKE FAILURE YOUR FUEL":
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Here’s something the best athletes understand, but seems like a hard concept for non-athletes to grasp. Non-athletes don’t know what to do with the gift of failure. So they hide it, pretend it never happened, reject it outright—and they end up wasting it.
Listen: Failure is not something to be ashamed of, it's something to be POWERED by. Failure is the highest octane fuel your life can run on. You gotta learn to make failure your fuel.
When I was on the Youth National Team, only dreaming of playing alongside Mia Hamm. You know her? Good. I had the opportunity to visit the National Team’s locker room. The thing that struck me most wasn’t my heroes' grass-stained cleats or their names and numbers hanging above their lockers—it was a picture. It was a picture that someone had taped next to the door so that It would be the last thing every player saw before she headed out to the training pitch.
You might guess it was a picture of their last big win, of them standing on a podium accepting gold medals—but it wasn’t.